"I've found the healing arts instruction at the Sennin Foundation Center for Japanese Cultural Arts to be logical, simple, and comprehensive. Of equal importance, I've been able to use these techniques to help heal my own injuries and illnesses as well as those of some of my friends."--A Sennin Foundation student.
Sunday, May 29, 2011
Healing Arts at the Sennin Foundation Center
Nakamura Tempu Sensei, founder of the Shin-shin-toitsu-do system of Japanese yoga, also taught a method of self-healing and bodywork (hitori ryoho or hitori massage). His emphasis was on yuki, which is the transference of life energy through a massage-like technique.
In most aspects of life, it is vital to be able to throw 100 percent of ourselves into the moment at hand, and this positive mental state is called Ki no dashikata, or "the projection of life energy." When our life energy freely exchanges with the life energy that pervades Nature, we're in our happiest and healthiest state.
We've all met exceptionally positive and animated individuals, people who project a "large presence." The intangible, but unmistakable, "big presence" an energetic individual is projecting can be thought of as universal life energy, and it is an indispensable aspect of yuki.
And in Japan, the universal essence that pervades all of the Nature has a name. It is called Ki.
An understanding of Ki is not something that can be fully detailed on a web site. For the moment, the principal points to remember are that Ki amounts to the animating force that vitalizes all creations, and that a relaxed body, along with a positive mental state, sets it free. On the other hand, physical tension and/or the negative use of the mind cause Ki ga nukeru--"the withdrawal and the loss of Ki."
Ki has been described in a variety of ways, by an equally wide variety of people. In the Sennin Foundation, we are thinking of Ki as the essential building block of nature. That universal substance from which all things emanate, exist as, and revert to
. . . the connective membrane of the absolute Universe. (Of course, just as all the cells in the body are inseparable from the body, we can only draw an artificial separation between the Ki that links all creations in Nature and Nature itself.)
Unfortunately, discussions of Ki are frequently covered in mystical tones, and some writers have suggested that Ki is invisible. This depends on one's point of view. Certainly it is hard to observe the motion of Ki as something which is apart and different from the various and boundless different aspects of Nature.
A nondualistic worldview does not inevitably reject the relative world, but instead, sees the absolute oneness of Nature that underlies all relative differences. In this case, a willow tree is Ki, and when the wind causes the tree to lean, it is Ki blustering. And we are Ki watching the motion of Ki in the Universe, which is Ki itself. The wind blowing the willow, the swaying tree, the mind that sees and moves with the wind and willow--all are external reflections of diversified elements of Ki, or of the sum total of the Universe. Ki is then not some much preternatural, invisible, or elusive, but it is instead, all encompassing. Ki's genuine far-reaching and down to earth character is reflected in the Japanese language itself, which uses this ordinary term in a seemingly immeasurable number of popular compound words and expressions.
Yuki means "transfusion of Ki," and it functions in a way that is not dissimilar to a blood transfusion (yuketsu). In essence, it is possible, by studying methods of mind-body coordination and Shin-shin-toitsu-do meditation, to learn to transfer Ki from the thumbs, fingertips, and palms to weakened parts of the body, as a way of boosting the natural healing process. Students at the Sennin Foundation Center for Japanese Cultural Arts can receive instruction in this unique art of healing.